You’ve probably heard that your air conditioner needs to be maintained at least once a year.
However, (and this may come as a shock coming from an HVAC contractor) annual ac service maintenance isn’t absolutely necessary (if you’re a risk taker.)
Here are three cases where getting a ac service tune-up isn’t really needed.
You’re not concerned with high air conditioning bills
When you don’t maintain your air conditioner’s health it will run less efficiently, meaning your cooling bill will be higher than usual.
So, a higher energy bill does not mean you HAVE to get it maintained. It’s just a cost you incur every time you don’t do it.
Pay attention to how much your energy bills rise if you don’t maintain your system to see the difference.
Just make sure your usage hasn’t changed so you can get an apples-to-apples comparison. But looking at your energy bill isn’t really enough. You also need to keep in mind the next two points…
You’d rather pay more later than a little bit now
According to Consumer Reports, a central air conditioner lives about 10-15 years. And not maintaining your air conditioner shortens that lifespan.
You can see why from ENERGY STAR’s maintenance checklist. For example: Over time, your air conditioner’s coils get dirty. Dirty coils cause your air conditioner to run longer. Meaning that it increases energy costs and reduces the life of the equipment.
So, does that mean you HAVE to get it maintained?
You’re just making a calculated risk that the money you save short-term won’t bite you in the butt in the long-term when your system dies prematurely, and then you have to buy one earlier than expected.
You’re not concerned about your air conditioner breaking down
Neglecting to maintain your air conditioner is like neglecting to take care of your car: completely optional. But the longer you wait, the longer something is more likely to break, costing you more in the long run.
Here are a few problems that show up with your air conditioner over time:
- Faulty electrical connections- Over time, electrical connections can loosen and cause unsafe operation of your system and reduce the life of major components.
- Parts causing too much friction- Your system needs to be lubricated over time. Otherwise, parts that lack lubrication will cause friction in motors and increases the amount of electricity you use.
- Clogged condensate line- A plugged drain line can cause water damage in the house and affect indoor humidity levels.
So, do you have to get ac service maintenance?
There’s no guarantee any of these things will happen if you miss a year of maintenance.
But the probability it will happen increases with each passing year.
Really you have to be honest with yourself: if you don’t have a set time to get it maintained (annually), will you ever have it done?
If most people are honest, they will say it will completely slip their minds, and they’ll never get it done.
And if you don’t ever do it, then the only time you’ll be calling an HVAC contractor is when your air conditioner breaks–costing you way more money than a typical maintenance call.
So is air conditioner maintenance necessary? No. But…
It is recommended. As you can see, all of the problems associated with not maintaining your air conditioner happen long-term. But like most things in life, looking at the long-term can save you money and several headaches.
Think of annual HVAC maintenance like investing your 401 K plan: Parting with your money early can be painful, but you’ll end up having more in the long run if you do it.
So, really, the decision is up to you–do you want short-term satisfaction or long-term enjoyment? – coolray.com
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